Rebiya Kadeer: Abdukadir Jalalidin’s “crime” is earning respect of the Uyghur people
Today I received credible information about the arrest of Abdukadir Jalalidin through social ,a highly respected Uyghur intellectual, academic and professor at Xinjiang Normal University.So far there has been no further information about his whereabouts since his forced disappearance since the January . Hearing this kind of news is not a big surprise for the Uyghur community living in exile.
But each time we hear the news about the arrests of influential Uyghur intellectuals , we often would like to know :why does the Chinese government arrest those peaceful intellectuals ?
Abdukadir Jalalidin had travelled abroad for academic purposes on several occasions. Even though he has had every opportunity to relocate to a foreign country, and knew well the risk to his life if he returned home, the possibility that one day he would taken away without warning with a black sack covering his head, but he cared about his profession, and his leading role in Uyghur society, so he chose to return home and work for his people.
Professor Abdukadir Jalalidin knew well that the Chinese government’s watchful eyes were on his every movement when he travelled abroad, so he was very careful not to put himself in any unnecessary trouble with the authorities in order to preserve his opportunities to work effectively for his people. So whenever he travelled abroad or wrote about the outside world, he avoided any kind of criticism of the Chinese government.
There was a campaign in East Turkistan last year demanding that all Uyghur officials, prominent figures and intellectuals write an oath to show their loyalty to the Chinese Communist Party. Abdukadir Jalalidin wrote this oath and publically declared his loyalty along with many other prominent Uyghurs.
Abdukadir Jalalidin’s arrest comes at the peak of this wave of mass arrest and putting tens of thousands people into so called “re-education” camps in East Turkistan. It once again proves that even though Abdukadir Jalalidin was very careful not to criticise the government
and tried to bring reconciliation between the Uyghur people and the Chinese government.
Regardless of all his efforts, plus the oath he swore to the government, it certifies that these efforts did not work in the present political situation in East Turkistan.
The same fate came to Yalqun Rozi, another prominent Uyghur academic and intellectual who was arrested a year ago. In the current climate, these repeated arrests prove that being an ethnic Uyghur or showing their cultural identity or promoting Uyghurness, is enough for them to be arrested.
Questions arise here - why were they arrested? Even though they had not participated in any politics, but only wrote and told the truth to the Uyghur people, they sought justice for Uyghurs, using the their academic work they searched and led the Uyghur people to find a solution for their unknown future.
Because of their works, they have earned great respect in Uyghur society. Uyghur people loved them with their heart and showed them great respect. These are factors explaining why they were jailed.
I have run out of words to describe the Chinese government, because China has arrested an intellectual like Abdukadir Jalalidin who tried hard to reduce conflict in the region.
Abdukadir Jalalidin is an intellectual who has been shown great respect and love by his own people, and that is why the Chinese government is not going release him from prison.
I appeal to the international community that Abdukadir Jalalidin is an academic, and well-known Uyghur intellectual. He studied oriental and western civilisations and identified that there were no significant contradictions between these two civilisations.
He was an intellectual who educated and led the Uyghur people in the values of morality and humanity.
I urge the wider international community to see the reality that Abdukadir Jalalidin is an intellectual who not only educated and led Uyghur people towards a peaceful life, but through his great academic and literary works, he made a significant contribution to the peace of humanity, so his works need to be valued and translated, and first and foremost, we all need to take immediate action to urge for his release from China’s prisons.